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New Transitions: A New Guild and Going Casual

New Transitions: A New Guild and Going Casual

I’ve been delinquent about updating my blog and I can only blame it on three things: real life demands, missing my mom and the decision to finally start scaling back on my raiding. On the last one, translation: I’m going casual.

The last several weeks have rocked my world in both a good way and a not-so-good way. My mom, whom I had not seen since April last year, came to visit and stayed with me and hubby for a month, capping her stay with a lovely Thanksgiving dinner with us. In the four weeks she was here, I juggled road trips, sight-seeing, shopping, Mom-and-Daughter bonding moments, and raiding. In order to fit all those into my waking hours, I had to put some things on the backburner — my novel, my Basic Bookkeeping course, and yes this website.

I worked all those activities into a schedule that wouldn’t disrupt my raiding. For example, on days we went out of town to take my mom sight-seeing, I made sure we got home before dark so I wouldn’t be late for the raid. I’d show up half an hour before start time, with noodle carts and flasks and potions on the ready, only to find out a couple of co-raiders couldn’t make it. Then we’d waste 45 minutes spamming Trade for replacements. And I’d tell myself, I skipped eating dinner/watching Netflix with my Mom for this??

Maybe the Universe was trying to tell me something, but during those four weeks with my mom in town, there were these little incidents in-game that exasperated me to F*ck-This-Shit levels. I’d show up for raids where we had 13/14 on farm yet repeatedly wiped on Garrosh because some idiot kept dying to the boss’ cone effect in the virtual realm.  Then attendance started becoming piss-poor the week and a half before Thanksgiving, which was understandable because, hey, people have stuff to do to get ready for Turkey Day. I still continued to show up faithfully. Then one night (a non-raid night), I discovered that half my raid team pugged their Garrosh kills separately and got their titles. Which led me to ask this question: what is the point of having a dedicated raid team if you guys will just resort to pugging?

I would understand if they pugged out of exasperation themselves and/or they wanted to learn a more effective approach to the Garrosh fight from the best players on the server. But their little pugging exercise did nothing for the raid team as a whole, and if I may add, to my own morale, because a few of those people just stopped showing up. Like really? You got one kill and now you don’t feel like logging on? So much for team spirit.

While all that was happening in Azeroth, the Universe threw an offer my way: one of my dearest friends in California told me to get cracking again on that novel; he has publisher pals based here in the US and our home country and if I could just finish that damn manuscript, well, you get the picture. Me? A published novelist? Not gonna say no to that opportunity! (And no, in case you’re wondering, I will NOT write about vampires and S&M. Bloodsuckers and smut are numbers one and two, respectively, on my hate list.)

With that major project on my agenda, plus all the other real-life things that cropped up and are demanding more than the usual attention, I took a good look at the routine I’ve been living for a while and realized something’s got to give to make room for the new stuff.

WoW got the axe. Well, not totally.

Since our raid team was not the same as it was when we got everybody together and we didn’t raid weekends, I decided to look for another home. My new guild has five raid teams and I was put in the weekend group, an arrangement that suits me perfectly. That leaves Monday to Friday to do my work (and sneak in some mount runs and dailies, haha) and accept the occasional weekday dinner invites (no more rushing back home!).

In hindsight, Mom’s visit and my friend’s offer – along with the recent incidents in the game- were by and in themselves a catalyst for my decision to scale back drastically. I can’t have it all but I will have so much more if I grab those Real Life opportunities.

Will I still be around for the next expansion? It’s looking more and more iffy, folks. It’s like I tell my friends, it’s going to take a miracle of Biblical proportions to make me stay for Warlords of Draenor. I still love and will always love this game, but I’m ready to move on.

Siege of Orgrimmar: 12/14

Siege of Orgrimmar: 12/14

I take back what I said in my previous post and no longer despise the conveyor belt in the Siegecrafter Blackfuse fight. Last night, I finally got the hang of it without dying to those blasted curtains of fire or derping on my jumps. We downed the S.O.B.!

Siegecrafter Blackfuse Killshot

And what’s even better was that RNG was so kind to me on my coin rolls, yielding me Xifeng, Longblade of the Titanic Guardian and Siegecrafter’s Forge Hammer!

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Look at dem puppies. I’m talking about my new weapons.

Now all I need are bracers, a second ring and boots and I’ll be totally rid of last tier’s gear.

Siege of Orgrimmar: 11/14

Siege of Orgrimmar: 11/14

Here’s a quick update on my progression within the last week:

We finally got Spoils of Pandaria and Thok the Bloodthirsty down.

Spoils of Pandaria-Completion

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Such an awkward kill shot with Thok’s head missing. Oh well.

I got my 2-piece set and my second Warforged item, Evil Eye of Galakras.

I have the advantage of being the only strength melee in the team, so there’s no real competition for plate DPS gear. However, I lament the fact that due to the very melee-unfriendly mechanics of each boss fight, I spend more time running away from bad stuff instead of fully utilizing the power of my new gear. My ilevel is now at par with the best damage dealers in the team but I find myself with more downtime no thanks to the mechanics. Oh, don’t get me started on how many times I was targeted by Thok in one attempt. The bastard just loves me!

If all goes well attendance-wise, we’ll be doing another attempt on Siegecrafter Blackfuse on Monday. As a parting salvo, I just want to say that there is a special place in hell for the person who designed the conveyor belt for that fight. I hate you with all my might, good sir.

Siege of Orgrimmar: Malkorok Down 9/14

Siege of Orgrimmar: Malkorok Down 9/14

Last night’s raid was a pretty good one for the following reasons: successfully killed General Nazgrim again, got our first Malkorok kill…

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…I automatically won Malkorok’s Tainted Dog Tags that dropped off said boss, being the only strength melee DPS in the group, AND I got promoted to Core Raider. 🙂

10-Man Norushen: Idiots Need Not Apply

10-Man Norushen: Idiots Need Not Apply

Norushen is both a DPS and idiot check fight.

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Normally, I’d rejoice over killing a new boss. But two weeks into the new patch, a great number of guilds on my server are already more than halfway into Siege of Orgrimmar, while we got stuck on Norushen until tonight.

‘Cause people were failing on the idiot check that was the purple orb, which was only one of many idiots checks in that fight.

Third boss. 3/14. Whoop-dee-doo!  /sarcasm

We lost our best heals to another server. We lost a mage who was our top DPS to another guild on this server. Since leaving us, that mage is now 8/14 in SoO. Guess he made the right decision, after all.

And one person – who is neither Raid Leader or a tank – won’t shut the hell up during boss fights and kept a running commentary on everything, practically talking over everybody that I had to put the irritating prick on mute for the rest of the evening.

Two hours on Norushen only. That’s how my evening went. FML.

Thank God for “Breaking Bad” on Netflix and a supply of frozen margaritas to help me forget my woes in Azeroth.

Some Good News

Some Good News

After one crappy RNG week after another, I finally ran into some good luck tonight. Ji-Kun dropped the leg tier token I so desperately needed – and won – to get my four-set bonus back…

Greaves of the All-Consuming Maw

…and I also won Band of the Scaled Tyrant and Caustic Spike Bracers, though I’m rather iffy about the latter missing one secondary stat. Oh well, I could still use it for my tanking off-spec, I guess.

Then there’s the surprise achievement of the night, Ritualist Who

Ritualist Who?

And the second surprise of the night, my entire raid team left the guild to form our own little drama-free guild. After being in so many large guilds, I think we’ve reached that point where we stopped caring about Level 25 perks and just want to be in a small one comprised of our tight-knit circle of trusted comrades. The perks are easily attained over time, but peace and order become difficult to achieve when there’s just too many out-of-control and untrustworthy people on board. Scaling back just seems like the perfect solution for us now.

And besides, life is too short to hang out with asshats.

Throne of Thunder: 12/12 At Last

Throne of Thunder: 12/12 At Last

God, what a night! Downed Iron Quon, Twin Consorts and da man hisself, Lei Shen, within a 2 and a half hour period. Not bad for peeps who have never done the last three bosses on normal before.

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Well done, Team Madness. After all the frustrations, the break-ups, the guild politics and the painful rebuilding, we can now relax and give ourselves a pat on the back.

Looking forward to Patch 5.4!

First Primordius Kill

First Primordius Kill

And another boss down.  #oneshot #zerg

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Not to mention another cheesy achievement for 10 points!

We’re getting our groove back.

I hope I didn’t just jinx myself.

/think positive thoughts

At the Mercy of No-Shows

At the Mercy of No-Shows

Shit always happen when Mercury is in retrograde. You can’t get everything on your list done because this is the period when many things go awry: gadgets break, things move slower, and people become dumber. If you want specifics, here’s a list from the Llewellyn Journal on the subject:

WHAT TO EXPECT

 – Angrier people
 – Crazy drivers
 – More accidents
 – Miscommunication
 – Quarrels
 – Computer problems and breakdowns
 – Delays
 – More mistakes
 – Slow mail
 – Games of phone tag
 – Wrong directions
 – Missed appointments
 – Dead cell phone batteries

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. In a nutshell, this is the time to lower your expectations, avoid making important decisions or milestones (negotiate and sign contracts, start a new job, launch a new product, and the like) and not be surprised when people don’t show up for your team’s goddamn raid night — which is exactly what happened last night when a tank and DPS were no-shows.

I swear, I wanted to let fly at something.

Badass Nun

It’s been really infuriating how my team and I have been in our new home for a month and we can’t move on to Durumu because someone is always a no-show week after week. It makes me cringe to know how much my Raid Leaders have invested to get this many toons in our original team to Stormrage, not to mention crafting 522 boots gratis to help boost stats. And what do those people do in exchange? They either go on a THREE WEEK LEAVE or just not show up on continuation night. And ever since Mercury went retro, attendance just became so much worse no thanks to those cockblocking no-shows.

I told my RL that it’s time we stop tolerating all that bullshit and find truly reliable people to fill spots PERMANENTLY and to just extend the raid lockout since many of us already have the good gear from the first half of ToT. I added that I was sick and tired of being at the mercy of inconsistent people and with Patch 5.4 in the works, we can’t afford to waste any more time.

Screw tolerance, just get people who can show up and get the job done!

/end rant

Not a Bad First Week on My New Server

Not a Bad First Week on My New Server

I hope I’m not jinxing myself when I say that I have no regrets transferring to this realm and that I’ve accomplished more in my new home than I have in the few months I was on Whisperwind.

For starters, the six of us who left Whisperwind plus four people from our Stormrage guild downed Horridon and Council of Elders with ease, something that eluded us in the recent past no thanks to some individuals who couldn’t push more than 65K DPS even with an ilevel of 500 (among other stumbling blocks).

And we finally got our Tortos and Megaera kills.

Tortos Guild Run

One Up Cheevo

Megaera Guild Run

Not our best damage done but I guess not too shabby for our first kill.

Anyway, I’m really happy with what we’ve done so far and even happier that the guildies who I transferred with are among the nicest, most supportive people I’ve met in this game. I’m looking forward to accomplishing more as the weeks go by.

Have a good night, y’all, and here’s to a brand new WoW week!

Decisions, Decisions

Decisions, Decisions

When your raiding team moves to another server and your Raid Leader offers to pay for your server transfer so you could resume progression with them, what would you do?

Hiker

(Image from: Cybex Fitness Blog)

Eh, I’ve made my decision.

To be continued.

A Good RNG Day So Far

A Good RNG Day So Far

I got two upgrades today! Thanks to Hordor who suggested I sacrifice a goat today the Man upstairs who convinced the RNG spirits to take pity on me!

I got Crown of the Golden Golem from dark Animus (didn’t use a coin) and Gauntlets of the All-Consuming Maw from Nalak (used a coin).

Crown of the Golden Golem

Love the look of the helm!

Oops, my LFR queue popped. Going to do the new wing. Wish me luck!  #didntreaddungeonjournal